How could the Ephesian letter say that apostles must continue in the New Testament church when apostles are supposed to be those who directly observed Christ's ministry here on earth?
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|From the above
passages, it is clear that there were at least sixteen
people who were called to the office of apostle in the
New Testament church.
Some will ask the question, "How could God continue to call apostles after Christ's work was finished and there were no more believers left who had directly observed Christ's ministry?" The underlying assumption behind this question is that God ceases to reveal His will to man, that He is now silent.
The fact is that God is very much alive and is actively involved in the affairs of men. He continues to reveal His will to His church. Even after Christ died on the cross, He revealed Himself to Saul of Tarsus on the road to Damascus. This man, who was not an eyewitness of Christ's ministry on earth, became one of the greatest apostles of the New Testament church. If He can reveal Himself to Saul, He can call other apostles as well. This is in keeping with the passage in Ephesians.
Nowhere in the New Testament does it positively state that God intended for the office of apostle to cease at the end of some "apostolic age." There simply is no scriptural evidence to sustain this view. But the Ephesian letter does say that apostles will continue until the church achieves a specific spiritual level. That level of spirituality has not occurred. So apostles are still needed in Christ's church.
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